Capitalism: Learned from Experience, Not School

The majority of people interviewed for this class seem to have formed their ideas about capitalism from personal experience rather than from a historical perspective. Most people concur that capitalism is free enterprise without government influence or control. What people do not tend to agree on is whether capitalism benefits everyone. The people interviewed can be split into three groups based on their approval or disapproval of capitalism: a passionately enthusiastic group, an apathetic group, and an anti-capitalist group.

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Taken for Granted

JB is a is a 59 year old white woman. She graduated college with a degree in accounting and then attended law school. JB practiced law for almost 20 years and is currently a homemaker who is active in her church and community. After the interview, she told me that she doesn’t think about capitalism often, but she’s certain she would miss it if it were gone. Continue reading Taken for Granted

“The Natural Order of Human Affairs”

JB is a 59 year old white male who owns a small communications business and recently started a small farm. He typically votes Republican, though he has recently begun to consider himself more of a Libertarian than anything else. JB states multiple time that capitalism is the “natural order of human affairs” and that he knows of nothing that works anywhere near as well as capitalism.

How would you define capitalism?
“Capitalism is free enterprise business, where business is not very restricted in what it can and cannot do […], and it is the natural order of human affairs when freedom is present.”

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“A Vague Understanding of Capitalism”

KWH is a white, female college student from Northern Virginia with fairly liberal political views. She studies art and geography and has little interest in history or the economy. KWH, like many others, has spent very little time thinking about capitalism since she took Civics in middle school. Continue reading “A Vague Understanding of Capitalism”